Bowling alleys allowed to reopen across S.C.; McMaster declares new state of emergency

Bowling alleys allowed to reopen across S.C.; McMaster declares new state of emergency
South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster announced Friday that COVID-19 restrictions on bowling alleys were lifted.

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WMBF) – Gov. Henry McMaster declared a new state of emergency Friday, in addition to lifting restrictions on bowling alleys and the occupancy of retail establishments.

“South Carolinians know what they can do to keep themselves and their loved ones safe, and it’s incumbent upon each and every one of us to follow the advice and recommendations of the public health experts,” McMaster said. “We also must continue our methodical approach towards getting South Carolinians back to work and businesses contributing to the state’s economy. Businesses simply can’t be closed indefinitely, but they can operate in a safe way with our collective knowledge of the virus.”

According to the governor’s office, the “response” component of AccelerateSC, with advice and recommendations from the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control, have developed specific guidelines for how bowling alleys in the state can operate safely.

The guidelines include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Bowlers should be spread out on the lanes to ensure that they are six-feet or more apart. This can be accomplished by either limiting the number of people on one lane at a time and/or having an empty lane in between each active one.
  • Request that customers bring their own bowling balls and shoes, if they have them.
  • Clean and disinfect bowling balls and shoes between users.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces (bathroom doors, sink handles, chairs, etc.) routinely throughout the day.
  • Provide hand sanitizer at each lane. Make disinfectant available to customers who want to disinfect their ball and lane.
  • Disable video games, juke boxes, etc. or clean and disinfect them between each user.

McMaster’s announcement comes one day after the state registered a new single-day record of COVID-19 cases with 687.

On Friday, 770 new cases we’re announced, another state wide record.

The owner of 810 Billiards and Bowling said they we’re excited to get the news. Mike Siniscalchi said since their business is more than just a bowling alley, they were ready Friday afternoon to open up their lanes.

“Oh absolutely. I think the main thing is for everyone to feel safe when they come out and with the every other lane spacing hopefully we achieve that," Siniscalchi said, “Hopefully for the people who do come out, I don’t see why they would have any less of an experience than they’ve ever had before, have an extra couch to themselves, and get to spread out and relax and enjoy.”

He added he thinks the guidelines are fair and similar to any new restrictions for other businesses opening back up.

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